Backend houses continue to enjoy strong demand for processing IP camera chips and CMOS image sensor (CIS) chips, with their order visibility clear through the fourth quarter of 2021, according to industry sources.
The notebook market has been robust in recent months thanks to stay-at-home needs. Chromebook shipments are expected to rise sharply in 2021. Apart from Intel, some other chip vendors, such as MediaTek and Elan, are poised to see robust growths in reenues from the Chromebook segment. ODM Wistron saw its notebook shipments spiked 52% on year in first-quarter 2021. The smatphone market is also recovering, and Apple is expected to adopt teh more power-efficient LTPO backplane technology for OLED displays in the premium models of its next-generation iPhone lineup.
Foxconn Electronics (Hon Hai) founder Terry Gou will invest in EirGenix, a Taiwan-based contract development and manufacturing operator (CDMO) for biotechnological pharmaceuticals, to become its biggest shareholder.
Vietnam has joined the CPTPP (Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership) and RCEP (Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership), and has signed FTAs (free-trade agreements) with the EU and the UK. These deals have positioned Vietnam as a preferred location for manufacturers seeking to disperse their capacity deployments amid the US-China trade disputes.
IC testing interface solution provider Chunghwa Precision Test (CHPT) has upgraded its factory in northern Taiwan into 5G-based smart facility through cooperation with Chunghwa Telecom (CHT), its parent company, according to CHPT.
Taiwan's Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) has set aside a budget of NT$8.5 billion (US$299 million) for 2021-2024 to promote development and production of electric buses, and use of such buses in public transportation.
Production regionalization is fast gaining momentum as an inevitable trend for ICT players, particularly those with heavy investments in China, as clients have increasingly asked them to relocate production amid impacts of the pandemic and US-China trade tensions, according to industry sources.
TSMC has aggressive plans for expanding its fab capacity. In a recent letter sent to clients about canceling discounts for foundry service quotes, TSMC discloses it plans to spend US$100 billion on capacity expansions for the next three years - an annually average that is more than its 2021 capex budget. Chip shortages have been sending vendors in many sectors scrambling for supply - from manufacturing services, components to devices. Notebook ODMs describe the volumes of orders they have been receiving as "ridiculously" big, clearly as a result of overbooking by clients who just keep placing orders, despite possibilities that end-market demand could chill overnight. And chip shortages may not ease until at least first-half 2022, according to Arm Taiwan's president.
Inventec expects its automotive electronics business revenues to grow to NT$25 billion (US$868.35 million) by 2024, accounting for 5% of the company's overall amount, up from 1% currently, according to company president Maurice Wu.
Power supply maker and energy management solution provider Delta Electronics has upgraded a plant in Taiwan to a smart factory based on 5G private network through cooperation with Far EasTone Telecommunications (FET), Microsoft and PTC, according to Delta.
The current short supply of semiconductor fab capacity is not normal, as the overall capacity should be more than enough to satisfy all demand in normal times, according TSMC chairman Mark Liu, who describes as "economically unrealistic" attempts by the US and Europe to expand their own fab capacity to satisfy all of their needs. But the short supply has been sending foundry quotes rising, with UMC and PSMC set to adjust upward their quotes by 10-20% starting April for rush orders. The eletric vehicle (EV) industry has seen fast development with rosy long-term outlook, thanks to government policy support, according to industry experts speaking at a forum on future cars held in Taipei.
The pandemic has been accelerating digital transformation at enterprises and industries worldwide with over 65% of global GDP estimated to come from digital products and services in 2022, and many sectors including healthcare, catering, manufacturing and retail are fast creating brand-new digital business models via AI and 5G applications, according to Terence Liao, general manager at Dell Taiwan.
Notebook brand vendors are planning to raise prices for their upcoming new products to reflect increasing costs from raw materials, ICs and transportation, according to sources from the upstream supply chain.
Despite the pandemic-induced impacts, global electric vehicle (EV) shipments reached as high as 2.5 million units in 2020 - an achievement that has encouraged governments in advanced economies to accelerate policy formation that will be favorable to the advancement of the EV industry, according to industry experts.
Quanta Computer expects to post a double-digit increase in notebook shipments this year, while fellow ODM firms including Compal Electronics, Wistron and Inventec are also positive about their notebook shipments in 2021.
Many handset and component manufacturers that have participated in India's five-year production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme have urged the Indian government to push back the program's timeline by a year as pandemic-induced impacts have disrupted their production targets.
Judging from orders on hand and end-market demand, Compal Electronics expects its notebook and non-notebook shipments to experience double-digit growth in 2021, according to company president Martin Wong.